Airlines have gone through a lot in recent years. Back then, it isn’t much of a stretch to say that one has to go through a ritual when preparing for a trip, as they were beautifully glamorous affairs. Passengers often dressed up before their trips to match the swanky fashions of the crewmen and flight attendants. Aisles had much more legroom, with passengers reclining their seats as they wished. And one could indulge in high society vices—such as liquor and cigars—as they pleased, making the act of flying not only a necessary transportation route but also a social event for some.
As more people began to see the merits of air travel, however, so did the demand for it grow. And as more and more potential passengers came on board, so did the airlines fashion more ways to accommodate this influx, such as the economy class. This, unfortunately, would be carried over to the next generation of commercial flight, and the glitz and glamor of flying eventually eroded over time.
Nowadays, if you want to re-capture that moment in flight, the best option would be to fly privately, which still offers the same level of sophistication and comfort of the Golden Age of Flight, if not more. But with airlines garnering more passengers and new policies in place, passenger comfort has slowly inched itself back into importance. All things considered, then, what can airlines learn from private aviation when it comes to hospitality? Here are some examples:
A more personal touch to airline service
Because of its scale, in-flight service in the private aviation sector can be said to be more intimate, as crew and attendants can focus more on the needs each passenger has. Whether it’s a glass of bubbly or some help with their seats, one could count on support when they need it. It’s a standard that’s kept for all private or business jets when called for, something that helps the sector’s image of glamor and luxury.
The idea of making airlines more high-class regarding service has long been discussed and debated, as some concerns regarding passengers pilfering in-flight bedding and the need to make a profit. Amenities, however, can only account for so much of quality airline service. A good bulk of it comes from how passengers are treated. For instance, how responsive is the airline crew to their needs? Are your passengers being handled with care, or with disconnection? A little bit of personal connection can go a long way, even for an airline with limited resources.
Get to the bottom of what your passengers want
It isn’t groundbreaking in any way, but it still holds true—the most successful private aviation providers are the ones who know what their passengers want. Whether it’s clearer communications, ground service, or more space, one way to get passengers hyped about your service is to deliver on their needs. And the same things go with airline service.
For the most part, problems with airlines have long been recorded and reported, but don’t seem to be going anywhere. Fortunately, with the passing of the FAA Reauthorization Bill, some of these issues have been addressed, such as limited legroom for seating and getting booked out of flights. This, however, shouldn’t be the end of efforts towards hospitality. The more you get to the heart of what your passengers want and address them, the closer you are to scoring their approval.
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